Dr’s Karen and Darwin Perkins help organizations and individuals recognize and fulfill their full potential. The doctors have dedicated their lives to helping corporations by improving their communication professional growth, and relationship skills.
The Dr’s have coached and mentored more than 600,00 individuals worldwide in the past three plus decades. They are outstanding business leaders, consultants, mentors, and advisors. Their advice and guidelines have helped thousands learn the secrets of true leadership, have improved work performances and this has changed their world. Their students learn to promote happiness at every level in the organization. This improves their inter-relationships, enhances their self-esteem, and confidence which increases their productivity.
They focus on promoting corporate wellness which includes: emotional intelligence, change management, overcoming barriers and personal fears, team building, leadership, communications, conflict resolution, and stress management. The doctors use a toolkit that includes multi-media, Internal Reset Therapy©, one-on-one and group Internal Reset sessions, corporate keynote presentations, and seminars.
Dr. Karen Perkins is an author her latest book is Emotional Power. They do retreats, seminars that focus on incorporating making emotions work for you, being clear with yourself, promoting positive relationships, then communicating powerfully in order to align your direction and plans.
Hello and welcome to Dr. Nilda Business Foresight show. As always I’m scoping out new talent and people that are just amazing and I have today two doctors. They’re not doctors of medicine but, doctors of administration and technology. Together they’re an awesome team and to boot today’s their anniversary. So, let me tell you a little bit about them. They’re business consultants, public speakers for over 30 years between them both, they are technologists in business and they work on companies. Now the beauty of this and what fascinated me most is that as many of you know a lot of doctors or PhDers teach. You guys took it to practicality and did something with it beyond that academic structure which is what I did and I thought I was the only one. I am fascinated to meet other people that are doing what I’m doing but even better because you guys have been doing it for over 30 years. Given that you guys took this to the next level and have been working with corporations, what made you go that route?
Oh, that’s a good question. I started out as a young child determined to not be the employee and so I immediately went into leadership as soon as I could. I realized there was a real need for leaders to have somebody to support them and to help them and teach them. As I got into public speaking I found more and more that as the employees came for courses that there was a real need for leadership as well. That’s usually why the employees needed to come to the courses. I decided to go ahead and go into consulting not only to help the employees but to help the leaders so that they could help their employees. We call ourselves the wellness experts, corporate wellness. or business wellness experts but, we’re there to help the companies motivate and inspire their people and to help them with their emotional intelligence. My book Emotional Power is about the science behind emotions because people don’t think there’s logic there. But, there’s logic and emotions go hand in hand and so I have enjoyed helping people that way and it’s kind of one of those things I just fell into.
Ok and what about you Mr. Doctor Perkins?
I started out in technology so I was a junior programmer like every other junior programmer and worked my way up through the ranks. A lot of project management, a lot of coordination I had the luck I guess it is to work for several companies during my career. As I started going through the different markets and the different verticals I started noticing that one company or one set of verticals knew something about something that nobody else knew. Then somebody else knew something that nobody else knew and back 100 years ago when project management was just kind of starting it was the insurance companies that started project management. They were the ones that had that kind of need and then it moved over to IT and then it grew from there. 15 years ago, a business had no idea what project management was and quite frankly they don’t anymore either. At the same time, it is the kind of thing where I’ve got a large amount of knowledge in the IT sector. So, because of that when we sit down with businesses and say you know tell us what you’re planning, tell us how you’re going to do it. I can talk to the IT people and understand what it is that they’re saying rather than what it sounds like they’re saying to the business. Between us, we’ve got a good match. We’ve got both the business side and we’ve got the tech side and so we can help direct those managers and help them to understand what is going on in their business. Then that one step further how do you make your business well? How do you become a leader instead of just a boss? You move them in that direction and get their employees involved, get them anxiously engaged so they really want to be there and they’re happy at their job. They’re there doing the kinds of things they want to and they become innovative for the company which makes the company more profitable.
What are the running problems that you see in most large companies?
I’ll give one right off that bat and that is silos. Large companies develop silos; they develop places where no one else can go and because of that a lot of times nobody knows what’s in there. So, it’s a black box and when they draw it out as a flow chart it goes in the black box and something else comes out the other side but they have no idea of what happens inside there. That to me is one of the real failings of the large companies. They don’t take time to truly understand what the entire company does but there are these silos that produce something and hopefully, if the right thing goes in it then the right thing comes out of it. That’s a real hopefully because generally, the right thing does not quite go into it and then because of that garbage in garbage out you don’t get what you think. Suddenly, productivity profitability all those kinds of things that a company focuses on aren’t there and because it’s not a good product or it’s not a good process guess who gets upset? It’s not the managers it’s the workers.
Right, exactly, and now you find the same situation?
I see the same situation but the one I laugh at the most is that they call us in and they pay us an exorbitant amount of money and ask us to solve their problems. We go okay and so, then we go to the frontline employees and say so what’s the problem? They tell us and we say well how do we fix it and they tell us. When we go back and tell the leadership hey this is your problem and how you fix it and they go oh you’re brilliant and they pay us a lot of money and we go away. It’s like talking to your people so when they ask me what do we do to solve all our problems the first thing I tell them is communicating with your people on all levels. You don’t have a single problem within the company that somebody in the company doesn’t know how to solve. I mean they know how to solve it but they usually keep it to themselves, the silos, because “I’m safe.” If nobody else knows how to do it, I’m safe. They keep it to themselves to fix it because they told somebody else you know what we need to do this differently and somebody went oh no we don’t that’s not we do it. If there’s that open communication and if there’s that freedom, that freedom of safety, I can say and do whatever I need to that is not harmful. I’ll take your ideas and you take my ideas into consideration and we’ll see if we can come up with a solution together. I find that that doesn’t happen as much as it should.
For my graduate degree, one of the things that we studied was the difference and the change that there is in now flat organizations. The whole pyramid of managers over managers and you know all the frontline people there was a lot of dead weight on top. Do you find that that structure is coming back? That almost like a mom-and-pop or small business kind of entity. Is that happening more those flat organizations or are they happening less?
The companies we work with don’t have many of them. Will I say that it’s happening less? No. Could it be happening more? Absolutely but if it is they don’t need us as much as the other ones do. We typically get called into the ones that are more the pyramid.
I think one of the things coming before right now is the agile module the scrum module. Because of that methodology what you do is you take an expert from six eight nine areas and that group then becomes a team that goes out and creates something. They do that because they’ve got enough knowledge and expertise in the different areas to be able to know what to do given what the challenges are in that area. That’s a great model to follow the problem with that is that it falls apart after about ten people. You can’t take an entire organization and turn them into a scrum organization. You can take individual things and make them scrum and make them promote the company which then will promote profitability which is a great thing to do. But, those groups come and go depending on what the requirements are so what you must do is you must have some kind of organization that promotes the ability for people to become innovative. I’ve got a great idea who agrees it’s a great idea? Okay, so, now we’ve got six people that agree it’s a great idea and we need two more because we need somebody from finance and somebody from HR.
Are they having these conversations?
A lot of them are and it depends on how much they buy into that. The real problem with anything is a manager needs to show success. If they don’t show success they will not be a manager that’s how it works. They must have the ability to develop something like that, show a success, and then be able to duplicate it. If they can do that then yes it does go and so it depends on the company.
I find the biggest fear is making a mistake and so people don’t fess up when they do because it can’t show success if there’s a mistake. One of the things I love to teach is that I have three office rules. Number one everyone makes mistakes learn from it don’t do it again. My office rule number two is, fix it then return to rule number one rule. Number three if you can’t fix it return to rule number one because you don’t punish them for making a mistake but you teach them how to fix it. They are more likely to bring it forward.
Right and process that with it because nobody makes a 100 percent mistake so, where was that breakdown and why did that happen?
How do we prevent it from happening again? If you hide it, it not only doesn’t get fixed but it grows it warps and then you find it at the most inopportune time.
You can see you can walk into any organization anywhere in the world and talk to anyone person and say what is the biggest problem? You will get a valid answer so, going into an environment or creating an environment where your biggest problem can be solved regardless who you are and where you sit in a company shouldn’t be a big deal. What we teach the leaders is how to begin to lead in a fashion that allows for that to happen. A lot of times it’s we don’t do it that way and you’re not allowed to be in that area because that’s not your job and those kinds of things. If you can break down those barriers and people can begin to talk and then become innovative then suddenly the entire profile changes.
From the frontline employees, what do you see as the running problem because I remember being on that end and knowing very quickly in my early career that I didn’t want to be there very long?
Well, some frontline employees are all they ever want to be because the responsibility of doing something different, being the supervisor, being the head of the line, whatever is frightening. So, they enjoy being the frontline employee and with that they want the freedom to do their job the way they know it will be best done. They need to feel trusted.
So, they want to do the job?
There are very few that don’t want to do the job most of them want to do the job and they want to excel and they want to succeed. Then this is this whole other coin that if people are failing at their job they know it and they don’t want to be there but people don’t want to quit because quitters are losers and losers are quitters and if I quit I put my family in jeopardy. One of the things I teach the companies is to help them succeed and if not at their job find another place in the company they can. Teach them the skills and if they’re just not getting it love them enough to let them go because if you let them go they’re not the villain. Now they’re the one that everybody gathers around them and loves them and says we’ll figure it out. Where if they just quit everybody’s like how are we going to pay the bills? How are we going to eat? How are we going to pay the mortgage? So, do them a favor but don’t just fire people willy-nilly teach them first. Help them, love them, and let them know I want you to succeed and if they’re off track tell them hey you’re off track a little bit what can we do to get you back on track.
Also, the other thing is finding what their skills are. They may be in a job because that’s the job they gave them. Often people would come in and they wanted a specific job and well that’s not available okay so then they took what was available. They never got the opportunity to go to what they wanted to do.
I think it’s even beyond that. A lot of it has to do with the personality type there are some personalities where you can give them a job and they will be happy in that job for the rest of their life. That gives them the satisfaction that they need they get any other recompense if you will from outside of the job they just want the job. They get very good at it they‘re very reliable people they’re great. There are others who are here and there and here and there and there and there. They couldn’t hold a job for 20 minutes if it was their responsibility. Those are great people those are the ones who are going and exciting people to get things done so there’s a place for them too. There are others who when they say I have a good idea it is the good idea and whether anybody else believes it or not it is still good. That’s your manager that’s a person who can gather people around and say okay I got something cool let’s go do it. If you don’t consider the personalities and the jobs then you start to develop an environment where the people say they don’t care about me, they don’t like me, they don’t appreciate me and all that.
In addition to that, I like to teach the HR departments and the managers to teach your people to volunteer for what they want to do. People afraid to volunteer and say hey I want this other position because they were afraid. What if I’m rejected? What if they don’t think I can do it?
What if I go back to that 30-day trial and I didn’t make it and I lose my job? That is scary.
Teaching them to volunteer and make volunteering a safe thing.
I love that. You also speak well you both do so what are the topics that you cover?
The main topics I like to cover is emotional intelligence dealing with difficult people and leadership skills.
I deal with change basically so, corporate change, organizational change. How do you deal with that? It’s more than just the great cycle but it is what’s involved you get a new project and you get a new system and you get kind of thing going. How do you get your people on board with that and then once that thing happens whatever it is how do you go to the next level? When the next person walks in the door has no idea what you just did how do they come up to speed? So, it’s an entire continuity thing that people are just now starting to recognize but that’s a major thing. That’s efficiency, that’s profitability, that’s where it either works or it doesn’t work and it’s a long-term thing. I’d love to talk about that because we’re just now getting to the point where we’ve got systems that will support that kind of thing.
That’s awesome so, what’s the next thing for you guys? I’m an innovator and I always look at the future so what’s the future for the both of you?
Oh, I’m always coming up with ideas.
We are having fun right now and we enjoy what we’re doing. We spend a lot of time speaking and mentoring with the senior managers. We’d love to do that we’re old enough now they pay attention to us so it is kind of nice that we’ve got the authority of age now. I think probably for the next three or four years at least that’s probably what we’re going to do. We’re talking about doing some work over in Asia again and I’d love to do some seminars there and help them come up to speed. We’re moving more and more towards the seminar kind of thing and away from consulting a little bit but senior coaching we love.
Senior coaching corporate retreats things of that nature.
That’s so fun and you guys are so much fun so, happy anniversary.
Well, thank you very much.
Thank you so much this is awesome and again this is great for the audience because some of our audience is front line or they’re in that area. It doesn’t matter what stage they’re in well here are two doctors Dr. Darwin and Dr. Karen Perkins and they’re just amazing. All right guys so until next week thanks again for visiting with us and I’ll bring you, even more, guests next week bye.
Interview with Dr. Darwin Perkins & Dr. Karen Perkins
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